When she says Gavin Newsom is "the biggest panhandler in town," Alioto may be using her sense of humor to get your attention, but her meaning is no joke.
"I think that's a personal experience. Gavin Newsom doesn't have a clue how people suffer. If you see someone you can relate to having a hard time, then you can get it."
-- MisterSF.com http://www.mistersf.com/archive/index.html?archive63.htm
Speaking at the Plumbers' Union hall on Market Street, Alioto was on the attack as the crowd of union workers shouted "Angela, Angela, Angela.''
"This isn't about Angela Alioto,'' she said. "It's about universal health care. It's about good wages. It's about making sure Mr. Gavin Newsom gets nowhere near Room 200,'' the mayor's office in City Hall.
Alioto used her closing statement to attack Newsom, the front-runner in all the polls, for his failure to disclose more than $2.1 million in loans he received from San Francisco billionaire Gordon Getty.
"The most important things in an elected mayor are honesty, disclosure, integrity," Alioto said. "No one has a right to run for mayor of San Francisco without telling us who owns them."
Alioto -- who knows a done deal when she sees one -- wasted no time getting into union President Chris Cunnie's face and questioning him for appearing on stage at Newsom's kickoff event March 8.
"What's the difference between me being up with Newsom and (Service Employees union head) Sal Rosselli being at your kickoff?" Cunnie shot back.
"The difference," Alioto replied, "is that you're a jerk."
Already, the other candidates have jumped up to say they always knew that his initiative -- Proposition N -- to replace cash welfare grants with food and shelter was flawed and that they have better plans to help homeless people.
"He's simply not competent," said challenger Angela Alioto, a former supervisor who is now a trial attorney.
Mayoral candidate Angela Alioto blistered rival Gavin Newsom this week for not coming clean about his money ties to billionaire Gordon Getty -- but she didn't say "boo" about her own family's ties to Getty money.
Or their ties to Newsom money, either.
In yet another example of just how small this town really is, Alioto supposedly solicited $20,000 from Newsom and his Getty-backed Plump Jack Development Fund for her son Adolfo Veronese's North Beach restaurant back in 1998.
The 2,500-square-foot Green Street restaurant, called Adolfo's, went belly up after just 18 months -- with the space soon sold to another restaurateur.
"It's certainly an environment of hypocrisy when Angela is soliciting investments for her own family," charged Newsom's campaign manager, Eric Jaye.
Jaye said the only person who didn't lose everything on the deal was Alioto herself, who wound up holding title to the only real asset -- the building's lease -- which she supposedly sold.
"She has a standard of absolute full disclosure," Jaye said, "so ask her how much money she made. . . . The investors -- including Getty -- lost everything, and Angela walked away with everything."
That's "a blatant lie," Alioto shot back.
For starters, Alioto said she didn't make a dime selling the lease -- all profits, she said, went to paying off the restaurant debts.
"I'm out of pocket $50,000 on the restaurant," she said.
As for the $20,000 in Newsom/Getty money?
Well, despite a copy of a canceled check from the Newsom campaign showing the investment came from the Getty-financed "P.J. Development Fund," Alioto claims Newsom and his dad, Bill Newsom, actually put up the money. And she says the loan was arranged by her son, who happens to be a friend of Gavin Newsom's.
"I have never talked to Gordon Getty about investing in any business -- I don't know the man that way," she says.
And one other thing, Alioto adds. "Where is the disclosure of Gavin's investment in Adolfo's restaurant on his disclosure report?
Supervisor Gavin Newsom "has repeatedly violated the law" by failing to completely disclose his financial dealings to city officials, Angela Alioto,
a candidate for mayor, charged Monday.
"The full disclosure Mr. Newsom has given needs to be fuller," Alioto said during a news conference at her North Beach law office. She promised that she and her backers will seek to have Newsom, the front-runner in the mayor's race,
investigated under "state, local and federal anti-corruption laws."
Alioto's charges spring from a recent series of Chronicle articles on Newsom's financial affairs, including a number of business and personal loans he has received from longtime friend Gordon Getty.
All the financial questions Alioto brought up were answered when the Chronicle stories appeared, said Eric Jaye, who's running Newsom's campaign for mayor.
"Consider the source of these statements," he added. "Angela Alioto is a third-place candidate who will do anything to attract the attention of the press, even making attacks like these in March, months before the election.
"Gavin Newsom has said he's the only candidate running for mayor of San Francisco," Jaye said. "All the other candidates are running against him."
Alioto said her attacks on Newsom and his "egregious financial misstatements" will be a continuing part of her campaign.
"I will have many press conferences on these (financial) documents," she said.
Alioto also argued that Newsom, who owns interests in a variety of businesses, including restaurants, a wine shop and real estate, has not revealed all the investors in his various property and business deals.
"What vote did Mr. Newsom do that benefited his partners in any way?" she asked. "How many votes benefited his partners?
"He thinks he's going to be mayor of San Francisco and not say who he owes his career to," Alioto added. "Not without a fight."
Newsom, who has been on the Board of Supervisors since 1997, has denied voting on any issues that aided his business partners or financial interests.
Alioto had financial problems of her own when she was on the Board of Supervisors. She was the subject of an investigation by the state Fair Political Practices Commission over an alleged failure to properly report loans on her homes. Her 1991 run for mayor left her with at least $700,000 in debts against $91,000 in annual income.
She was unable to repay a $250,000 personal loan she made to her campaign and arranged for her creditors to settle for less than what she owed them.
"It was tough," Alioto admitted.
But the financial success of her law practice has turned her fiscal situation around, she said Monday. She now owes $504,000 on the Pacific Heights home she has lived in for 32 years and is making a monthly, interest- only mortgage payment of $1,946.
"I'm very proud of (the mortgage)," she said. "It was quite a feat to get it down to where it was."
Alioto also released financial documents showing that as of Feb. 28, she has accounts with $412,770 in stocks, $377,455 in fixed-income securities, $49, 642 in money market accounts and $46,311 in mutual funds.
She also is sole owner of her law firm and a house outside Rome.
Her offensive began after Newsom, whose support from the business community is expected to make him the best-financed candidate, answered a question put to the candidates about what they'd do to bring about universal health care. He touted his support for a successful 1996 ballot measure that made health coverage for all residents an objective for the city.
"You just heard this was passed seven years ago," Alioto said into the microphone, gearing up one of several passionately progressive tirades that consistently won the biggest audience applause of the morning. "You have my promise that as mayor, there won't be a seven-year gap in providing universal health care."
She was just getting started. Throughout the morning her central theme was how a city government "full of waste and corruption" was squandering "millions and millions of dollars" on a political patronage system and on "studying projects that are never going to happen." Eventually, she worked her way up to the declaration "This is a world-class city that has gone into the dumps."
That was the bait Newsom finally bit. All morning he had played the pragmatic centrist to the progressive idealism of Alioto and Ammiano, saying, "We need to be innovative and entrepreneurial," and advocating "not pie-in-the-sky ideals but hard-headed, practical solutions."
After Alioto's "dumps" comment, Newsom acknowledged her crowd-pleasing style by noting that she's "always a hard act to follow," before taking issue with her comment: "I don't think we're in the dumps. I'm offended by that." Later, Newsom told us, in the same indignant tone, "I think the city is too important to bash for political purposes."
But Alioto seemed to enjoy clashing with the suave young entrepreneur turned politician, whose commercial ventures started with infusions of cash from billionaire family friend Gordon Getty. After the forum Alioto quipped to us, "It's easy to say the city's not in the dumps when you have dinner at the Gettys' place every night."
Alioto said that donating to Newsom "will give all these developers security for their contracts. I think this guy is going to make Willie look like a slow-growth mayor."
Newsom's opponents in the city's mayoral race have been quick to jump on him for not having foreseen the glaring legal flaw that virtually invited the Quidachay decision. Attorney Angela Alioto, for example, dismissed her opponent Newsom as incompetent. "It couldn't be clearer that the welfare code clearly states that it is up to the legislative branch of government," she noted.
"Mr. Newsom had no clue what he put on the ballot," Alioto said. "He did it to become mayor."
Care Not Cash "is so unthought out that it can't be implemented in any fashion," Alioto said, while Daly's plan "is a step in the right direction."
Former supervisor and current mayoral candidate Angela Alioto added, : "Willie Brown needs Newsom to be mayor to perpetuate the waste and corruption."